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The Nationalist Republican Alliance ( or ) is a conservative political party in El Salvadormarker. It was founded on September 30, 1981, by Roberto D'Aubuisson, in order to oppose the reformist military junta that was ruling El Salvador at the time. In the peaceful post-civil war environment, the party functions as a normal right-wing party, in the same way that the leftist Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN), the former guerrilla group, known for opposing the government during the Salvadoran Civil War, is now the main left-wing party in the country. ARENA controlled the presidency continuously since 1989, before losing the 2009 presidential election.


The party arose in response to the insurgency of the Frente Farabundo Martí for the National Liberation, FMLN, of communist ideology, which tried, through the arms, to demote the government and to install a state regime inspired by the governments of revolutionary Cubamarker and sandinista Nicaraguamarker. .

By its strong anti-communist line, ARENA had the support of some members of the Republican Party of the United States, like the ex- American senator Jesse Helms, who supported Roberto D'Aubuisson in the process of development of the party. The ideology the party affirms to believe in is a system of democratic and representative government, emphasizing the individual rights, the family like nucleus of the society and the respect to the private property.

In February 2007, three ARENA politicians were murdered in Guatemala, including Eduardo D'Aubuisson, the son of party founder Roberto D'Aubuisson.

In 2009, ARENA took out a full-page ad in a Salvadorean newspaper calling on President Mauricio Funes to recognise the interim Honduran government of Roberto Micheletti installed after the military had expelled President Manuel Zelaya.

Many claim that ARENA's actions and leadership during the civil war perpetuated crimes against humanity, leading to the brutal killing of thousands of civilians, and human rights activists by Death Squads and military forces supported by ARENA.

In the current era, ARENA has been found to engage in political corruption and election fraud.


ARENA is divided by 8 sectors: Farming, farmer, enterprise, feminine, youth, worker, professional, and brothers in the outside.

The higest authority of the party ARENA is the Comité Ejecutivo Nacionalista (COENA), which consists of 13 members. The members must be ratified annually through the General Assembly Ordinaria that is integrated by ARENA members of all the country and they have the power to ratify or nonmembers of the COENA, mainly the President.

After the COENA the 14 departmental directors and the departmental meeting are those that exert greater to be able in their respective department. In each department a director is named and is enclosed a member of the COENA for each department. From its beginning, his the most important roll is to organize the electoral campaign of the deputies and mayors of its department.

Electoral record

At the legislative elections, held on March 16, 2003, the party won 32.0% of the popular vote and 27 out of 84 seats in the Legislative Assembly. ARENA's successful candidate in El Salvador's 2004 presidential election was Antonio Saca. On March 21, 2004, Saca defeated Schafik Handal, the candidate of the left-wing Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front, by a margin of 58% to 36% with 70% turnout. He was sworn in as president the following June 1.

In the 12 March 2006 legislative election, the party won 39.4% of the popular vote and 32 out of 84 seats. At the January 18, 2009 legislative elections, the party received 38.55% of the vote, and again won 32 of the 84 seats.

On March 15, 2009, ARENA candidate Rodrigo Ávila lost the presidential election to Mauricio Funes of the FMLN.After elections, the party president was changed to Alfredo Cristiani.

ARENA Presidents of El Salvador


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